Barack Obama: A Reading

On November 4th, 2008, Barack Obama was elected president of the United States, and the stars noticed.

astrologyAncientAndModernOn that very day, the Earth was placed directly between Saturn and Uranus, creating an apparent opposition between the two planets. Astrologically, this planetary opposition indicated a conflict between an established authority and the forces of necessary change and upheaval. That was definitely a theme of the election. But this drama isn’t over yet: Earth will slide back between these planets four more times — on February 5th and September 15th of 2009, and then again on April 26 and July 26 of 2010. (Then it won’t happen again for 40 years.) Mark your calendars!

Actually, as an aside, this is part of a 20 year cycle of disruption. Twenty years ago, when Saturn and Uranus were conjoined, communism collapsed. Twenty years before that, when Saturn and Uranus were in opposition, it was 1968, an infamous year of assassinations, escalating war worldwide, etc. Twenty years before that, when Saturn and Uranus were conjoined, fascism came to an end; and twenty years before that was the beginning of the great worldwide depression…

So Obama will be president in very interesting times, and since time and custom and ambitious men have endowed the office of the presidency with powers far beyond what any one person can wield easily, it’s worthwhile looking at Obama’s name and astrological chart. What manner of man is he, and will he be up to the task?

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Dealing with Anger and Fear

Afflictive emotions – our jealousy, anger, hatred, fear – can be put to an end. When you realize that these emotions are only temporary, that they always pass on like clouds in the sky, you also realize they can ultimately be abandoned. — the Dalai Lama

Warning! I give lots of unsolicited advice in this article — unsolicited, unprofessional, inexpert, etc. I am in no way a trained psychologist. All I’m doing is relating my own experience; so proceed at your own risk.

ire31Fear, anger, worry, jealousy… These are some of the nastiest things we deal with in life. Why? Where do they come from? What are they for? And what can we do about it?

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The Druid Zodiac

[Disclaimer: while I am a linguist, I am not an expert on Celtic languages (ancient or modern), and I cannot vouch for the translations offered below. Most of the information in this article comes from the book The Lost Zodiac of the Druids by Gregory Clouter, and it should be noted that the views and translations in the book are not those entertained by most scholars.]

That the ancient druids practiced astronomy and astrology is beyond doubt. It would be amazing if they did not, since practically all ancient cultures did. But beyond that, their astronomical knowledge is specifically cited by many of the Roman, Greek and Irish authors that describe them; and there are even a few archaeological finds that suggest it.

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Primary among these is the Coligny calendar, discovered as little more than a pile of bronze fragments in 1897 — most likely smashed by Roman authorities during the suppression of druidic practice — and painstakingly restored piece by piece. Less than half of the calendar remains, but there is enough to clearly see a beautiful time-keeping system that aligned the sun and moon into a single calendar, and listed dozens of holidays, rituals, celebrations, and the like.

But if Gregory Clouter (The Lost Zodiac of the Druids, 2003) is right, the Gundestrup Cauldron puts the Coligny calendar to shame.

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Steve Pavlina Book Review III: the Tarot for Smart People

In the previous two posts in this series, I reviewed Steve Pavlina‘s new book Personal Development for Smart People, and suggested a way in which his seven principles (Truth, Love, Power, Courage, Authority, Oneness, and Intelligence) could be mapped to the seven visible planets in astrology (the Sun, the Moon, Jupiter, Mars, Saturn, Venus, and Mercury, respectively).  In this post I’ll carry it further, and tackle the correspondence of these principles with the Tarot.

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Steve Pavlina Book Review II: Seven Planets for Smart People

This post is the second in a series of three concerning the correspondences between astrology, the Tarot, and Steve Pavlina‘s seven principles of personal growth laid out in his new book, Personal Development for Smart People.  In the first article, I reviewed the book and suggested that Steve’s seven principles (Truth, Love, Power, Oneness, Courage, Authority, and Intelligence) corresponded exactly with the seven visible planets of astrology (the Sun, the Moon, Jupiter, Venus, Mars, Saturn, and Mercury, respectively).  In this post, I’ll dig a little more deeply into astrological matters, and talk about what this means for you specifically.

At the end of the article, I will give summaries of Steve’s system applied to the twelve Sun (Truth) signs, as well as the placement of Jupiter (Power) and Saturn (Authority).  If you know your date of birth, you will be able to locate the section that applies to you, even if you know nothing about astrology.

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Steve Pavlina’s Seven Principles for Smart People: Astrology and Personal Development

Steve Pavlina, the blogosphere’s foremost authority on personal development, has written a fantastic book on astrology and the Tarot.  The odd thing is that he doesn’t know it.

ire21In fact, as far as I know, Steve is completely ignorant of astrology and the Tarot.  He is something of a mystic — by his own account, he has contacted dead people, entered the astral realm, and channeled spirits — but this isn’t his main focus.  Instead, his passion is personal development — the pursuit of individual growth.

Personal development is a wide area of interest, and covers everything from time management to strength building to better business practice to exploring psychic powers.  Steve has touched on every one of these topics on his blog over the past four years.  Partly in order to bring all of these diverse interests into one framework, and partly because he’s a nerdy guy who likes challenging puzzles, he has written a book called Personal Development for Smart People, in which he boils his mission of growth down into three basic principles (and four derived principles) which can be used by anyone as a guide to self-betterment.  The seven principles are Truth, Love, Power, Oneness, Courage, Authority, and Intelligence.

What Steve doesn’t realize is that these seven principles are already an integral part of astrology and the Tarot.  In fact, the mapping is incredibly straightforward, as you’ll see.  But that doesn’t mean Steve’s work is redundant.  On the contrary, he brings a fresh perspective and insight into these ancient symbols, and lays out a framework to put them to work in your life immediately.  In this series of articles, I’ll review his book, show how his system maps to astrology and the Tarot, and tie the systems together to produce a rich tapestry of direction and possibility.

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What Do You Really Want?: Magic and the Collective Subconscious

A few weeks ago I gave some examples of my recent successes with magic (or “intention manifestation”).  The method I was using had three basic steps:

  1. Make sure you really want it.
  2. Believe it can realistically happen.
  3. Feel the gratitude for it.

astrologyAncientAndModernA simple method, and some good results can be achieved with it.  I gave four examples in my previous post, in which I generated some quick cash, repelled mosquitoes, improved my performance at pool (and caused my opponent’s performance to suffer), and located my lost beard trimmer.  In this post I’ll share some other recent successes, and discuss in some detail the question of what it means to really want something, which extends into the areas of the collective subconscious, dueling wizards, free will, and — what the heck! — the role of the Twin in mythology. Continue reading “What Do You Really Want?: Magic and the Collective Subconscious”

Spiritual Weight Loss II: the Abyss

Over a year has passed since my first post on spiritual weight loss, and it has been, frankly, extremely difficult — and at times harrowing. At first, things went very well; but then I began to lose ground — slowly at first, and then rapidly. In the spring, my health quickly became much worse, and I began to fear that I had serious problems.

ire30But let me be clear: this was not because the spiritual weight loss program was failing. On the contrary — without the principles of the program to guide me, I would probably have been a lot sicker, and I certainly would not have made the complete turnaround and nearly-full recovery I achieved in July.

But I’ll begin at the beginning.

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Step By Step Magic: Simple Intention Manifestation

In 2008 I turned some kind of corner in magic / intention manifestation (whatever you want to call it), and got markedly better at it.  The technique I developed then is not suitable for manifesting thousands of dollars or a house (in my experience, that takes sustained meditation paired with sustained action), but I’ve had some successes that blew me away nevertheless.  Gather ’round, and I’ll let you in on the secret…

How to Do It

It’s a three-step process.

1.  Make sure you really want it.  You don’t actually have to be specific about every detail, you don’t have to have a clear picture in your mind, or any of that; what you need is a very clear, simple, positive desire uncluttered by any doubts.  This can be tricky, because sometimes you have hidden doubts.  I’ll give some examples below.

2.  Believe it can realistically happen.  This can be kind of hard, depending on what it is you’re trying to manifest, and what your level of faith is.  But if you don’t believe it’s possible…  well, it won’t be.  It is easier to practice on more believable stuff first.

3.  Get yourself to believe that what you want is, in fact, about to happen and wrap yourself in the gratitude and happiness that you’re about to receive it.  I found it’s very helpful to say to myself, “I’m so grateful that X is about to happen!”  I repeat this a few times and imagine the feeling…  And then I really am feeling it.

Now, watch it happen!

Below are four examples of this technique in action.

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The Narnian Tarot

My nine-year-old daughter absolutely adores the Chronicles of Narnia. Nothing unusual about that, really — lots of kids do — but why?

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After all, isn’t Narnia Christian allegory? It’s blatantly obvious to anyone who gives it a moment’s thought. But I’ve argued elsewhere that children are natural born pagans. So what’s the attraction? Does Christianity touch something in children, after all? Or is Narnia not wholly Christian?

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